Valentina Fine Foods: the next level in store design

Valentina Clapham visual makeover

With eight branches already in London, Surrey and Kent, authentic Italian delicatessen, restaurant, cafe and wine shop Valentina Fine Foods, opened their ninth store in Clapham Junction at the taile end of last year.

Valentina called upon the expertise of Eve Reid, founder of The Retail School and visual merchandising specialists, The Metamorphosis Group, to help them with their in-store merchandising, space planning and increasing overall commercial performance.

These exclusive case study pictures gives a real insight into the process and methods behind planning a new store from concept to completion, particularly for retailers moving into their next, third or fourth bricks and mortar enterprise.

Valentina Fine Foods

Valentina Fine Foods

Situated at 281 Lavender Hill, London SW11 1LP, one block away from the bustling Clapham Junction Railway Station, this newest addition to the Valentina family boasts an estimated 5000 square ft. real estate site able to cater to a total of 110 covers.

True to all Valentina sites, the Clapham Junction branch houses 1500 Italian products including fresh hams and salami, cheeses and traditional antipasti. Alongside this, is a complete range of store cupboard essentials, including Valentina’s own branded pasta, olives and oils as well as serving specials cooked freshly every day.

All of the produce in Valentina’s delicatessens is carefully sourced and imported from Italy by their very own buyers.

Design objectives & brief

The design and merchandising services retained by Valentina included:

  • New Store Design Intent
  • Detailing,
  • Sourcing & Specifying
  • Visual Merchandising plan
  • Hands on store set up support

The chief objectives for Eve and her team were to help Valentina benefit from a more focussed retail operation that would succeed through:

  1. Increased capability 
  2. Increased productivity 
  3. Consistency of delivery 

…in turn would directly affect:

  • Sales generation
  • Overall improved commercial performance

Metamporphosis Group recommendations

Using the Valentina Fine Food’s Clapham store as their flagship model, Eve and the Metamorphosis team focussed on creating ‘the perfect Valentina’ store, with the longer term view of it being to used as a platform with which to benchmark success, and a framework in which to strengthen the Valentina retail platform.

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Phase 1

  • Research – Store visits
  • Store Design Intent. Mood boards created with suggested design detailing application
  • Optimum Layout planning with Front Elevation Detailing
  • Foundational brand work

Phase 2

  • Direction with regards to all Brand Identifiers. i.e Uniform/ Bags etc
  • Clapham
    • Product positioning
    • Communication positioning and messages agreed
    • Store Design & Design Detailing
  • Sourcing & Specifying
  • VM Planning
  • Site Visits *When required

Phase 3

  • Store set up (hand on visual merchandising)

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Next Steps…

Valentina are an excellent example of a retailer who recognises that success lies in good communication.

Metamorphosis were able to offer direction on what key messages should appear in store, and where they should be positioned.

Valentina continue to strengthen the visual appearance of their existing retail platforms, creating a group of stores that excite and energise on all fronts, across all visual touch points and brand identifiers, while similarly continuing to reinforce Valentina’s brand valuesIf the Clapham store is anything to go by, they look on target to achieve it.

Many of the visual merchandising principles and best practices that Eve used with Valentina’s design are learned regularly by students visiting WBC’s The Retail School. Based in Brixton and trained by Eve’s expert team, the Retail School hosts day masterclasses in visual merchandising, window dressing and space planning. To book yourself or one of your team onto the next class, visit To book metamorphosis on a consultancy basis visit the

Valentina Fine Foods

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